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But first, its battery supplier, A123 Systems admitted that it supplied Fisker with defective battery packs and has taken the blame for the notorious glitch on the Consumer Reports’ Fisker Karma. A123 has said that it discovered defects in certain cells made by its plant that can “result in premature failure of the battery module or pack, including a decrease in performance and reduced battery life,” according to CEO David Vieau.
A123 will be replacing all the batteries and estimates it will cost the company about $55 million and will be funded over the next several quarters. Following the news and essentially admittance of guilt by A123 Systems, Fisker sent out its own press release announcing the upgrade of its VIP Customer Care Coverage, which comes with the purchase of every Karma.
The “enhanced” customer care package will now include a complete battery replacement at no cost for all affected 2012 model year vehicles, and all North American customers will receive a full vehicle warranty extension from 50 months/50,000 miles to 60 months/60,000 miles.
“The entire Fisker Team is committed to the complete satisfaction of our customers and their experience with our vehicles. As a new technology start-up Company, we have stepped up to many challenges in our short history as we have launched one of the most advanced electric vehicles with extended range in the world,” said Fisker CEO Tom LaSorda.
Certainly a step in the right direction, but it hardly builds consumer confidence in the Fisker brand. We will wait to see what else Fisker has planned for its Project Nina debut next week.
Before the New Year, Fisker announced that their Karma plug-in hybrid luxury sedan would be recalled for a potential battery coolant leak issue, and it appears that they’ve worked quickly to resolve it. Now the American green car automaker has said that a majority of all customer cars and dealer-held vehicles with the A123-supplied battery pack have brand new battery packs fitted, or a repair has been done to the hose clamp assembly.
It’s been a mere two weeks since Fisker was first made aware of the issue, so kudos to them for acting quickly in resolving the issue. The remaining customers have already been contacted and appointments are in the books for their replacement battery installations.
“We will always react quickly to ensure the safety and quality of our cars. We decided that the immediate replacement of the battery pack in every vehicle was the right approach for all our customers,” said Henrik Fisker, CEO of Fisker Automotive. “We identified the appropriate fix, made our retailers aware of the situation and began contacting all our customers within 48 hours and were well advanced with the recall ourselves before the official posting on the NHSTA website.”